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Antoine Brumel
c.1460 - c.1513
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A. Brumel
Antoine Brumel - also: Brummel, Brommel, Brunel - (c.1460 - c.1513), a Franco-Flemish composer born near Chartres. He held church posts in Chartres (1483 through 1486), Laon, Paris (where he was master of the boys at Notre Dame 1498 through 1500) and Lyons before becoming maestro di cappellato Alfonso I d'Este at Ferrara in 1506-9. His output includes twelve masses, twenty-nine motets, three magnificats and several chansons. His considerable prominence in his own time is suggested by the fact that he was only the third composer to have a volume of masses published by Petrucci (after Josquin and Obrecht), and by the many appearances of his music in MSS. His Missa Et ecce terraemotus is a remarkable piece for twelve voices. Many of his motets use borrowed cantus firmi, maybe with a different text, and are in a flowing, rhythmically intricate style, but his Sicut liliumhas an attractive simplicity suggestive of Italian influence.
Missa pro defunctis
Period:Early Renaissance
Composed in:1510c
Musical form:mass
Text/libretto:Latin mass
Label(s):Sony SK 46348
Gaudeamus CD GAU 352
Brumel was one of the composers to whom Petrucci devoted a volume of masses (1503), and indeed his masses continue to be his most famous works. Among his fifteen surviving mass cycles and four Credos, all are in four parts but one: The twelve-part Missa Et ecce terrae motus is by far his most popular work today. Brumel's Missa pro defunctis is also notably the first to set the 'Dies irae' to polyphony. Brumel wrote over thirty motets in a variety of styles, as well as a handful of secular songs and instrumental pieces. His style progresses from an irregular approach to rhythm in overlapping parts to more emphasis on strongly declamatory passages. His increasingly chordal style is often taken to reflect Italianate tendencies, a trait he shares with Weerbecke.
Author:Todd M. McComb
Missa pro defunctis for ATTB choir (4 voices mixed) contains:
- Introitus: Requiem
- Kyrie
- Sequentia: Dies irae, dies illa
- Sanctus Dominus Deus Sabaoth
- Benedictus
- Agnus Dei
- Communio: Lux aeterna

Brumel uses compared to his contemporaries for instance Ockeghem, La Rue, Richafort, Prioris texts out of the Roman Rite. Only in the composition by Brumel we see the Sequenz: "Dies irae, dies illa". This Missa pro defunctis has been probably composed in Ferrara. The Cantus Firmus can we find predominantly in the Tenor, voice III. Its interesting the Sequenz "Dies irae" is certain and clear composed for alternating use, whereby the strophe with odd numbers and strophe at the end will be performed by several voices ATTB, the strophe "Liber scripturus" (5) and "Inter oves" (15) are written for AT. The other strophe with straight numbers will be sung more choraliter that means uni sono in Gregorian mode.
Author:Wim Goossens
This Requiem is used by Juan Garcia de Basorto.